Q & A of the Week 你问我答
Loo 英式英语常用俚语

A ladies and gents sign for the loo
A typical loo sign
Question and Answer: Can you explain the meaning of the word loo?

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Programme Summary 节目梗概

Sun Cha from Urumqi gave is this week's question. He is living in the UK at the moment and he says he has heard people use the word loo and wants to know what it means.

Basically loo is a British English word people say to mean toilet. You can use this word in any situation - with friends, with colleagues, or even with your boss. It is informal language but we do use it all the time, even in formal situations.

A sign for ladies' and gent's loo
A typical sign for a loo

You might hear someone say, "I need the loo," or, "I'm just going to the loo." That means someone is going to the toilet or wants to go to the toilet.

There are many explanations as to why we might use this word in Britain, so it's hard to actually understand the real origin of where it might have come from.

Loo isn't the only word we say to mean toilet. There are lots of other words you might hear - lavatory, water closet, restroom, ladies' room, men's room to name but a few. They all mean toilet.

Thanks to Sun Cha for his question. If you have a question about the English language, send us an email at questions.chinaelt@bbc.co.uk. Your name and answer to the question could appear on our website.

Glossary 词汇



informal language



to name but a few

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